The Association of Film and Video Editors has written a complaint to the Federation of Western India Cine Employees (FWICE) to highlight the issues they have been facing especially in the OTT space. “These pertain to the fees, working hours and due credit in projects,” Ram Kishore, general secretary of the association, tells us.
BN Tiwari, president of FWICE, shares, “Around 20 editors, who have been working on OTT projects, came to us with several problems they have been facing over the last one year. First was about them getting replaced without any transparency or No Objection Certificate (NOC). Secondly, the rates being offered to them are lower than the union rate, as a result of which new editors are being brutally squeezed as they take up the project for the sake of getting a break in showbiz.”
The complaint letter has been signed by 245 editors, including Akanksha Gour, Shekhar Tiwari, Naman Arora, Aakash Gawali, Aarti Bajaj, Abhishek Seth, Ajay Yadav, Chetan Telgar and Aseem Sinha, among others.
A crucial issue that editors claim to be facing is that of credit. “We aren’t accorded credit in a fair manner and don’t have the right to apply to the union for dispute resolution,” says Kishore, adding, “Further, there are issues such as no allowance given to editors for travel and food, demands by production houses to work on any day and time including public holidays, and expecting them to work for up to 15 hours non-stop.”
All of this, Kishore elaborates, has an adverse impact on the “physical and mental health of younger assistants and associates” as they are made to work in an “unpleasant space, trying to meet deadlines”.
The objective of the letter to FWICE is to take these issues to streaming platforms and production houses. “We have also written letters to Netflix, Amazon and Zee, among others, as well as the production houses and film bodies, and are waiting for their reply to fix a meeting. I am hoping that it will happen soon. The editors want to flag these issues to the concerned organisations, get the required changes in the contracts and find a resolution to all the problems mentioned. We’ll try our best to compensate them fairly,” concludes Tiwari.